The random—and not so random—musings of a quirky Regency romance writer.
No one with that many people in her head can possibly be normal...

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

~Regency Wednesday~ New Bethlem Hospital

How about a Regency location for a change? I found the following print and description in the August 1817 edition of Ackermann's Repository

 St George's Fields. 

  Having in a preceding number described the architectural arrangement and general appearance of this institution,  it will be sufficient here to advert to such particulars connected with its internal economy as are of any interest to the general reader. 
  This hospital is designed for the admission of all poor lunatics, except cripples and such as are afflicted with certain bodily diseases. Upon security being given that they shall be taken away when required, and have clothes found them, all admissible patients, except those from parishes and public offices, are admitted without fee or expense. Parishes and public offices pay three guineas for each, and enter into the same engagements. For incurables must be paid a deposit of five pounds, and nine shillings a week, besides their clothing; but if sent by poor friends, the weekly payment is reduced to six shillings. Patients remain till cured, or for twelve months, when they are to be discharged, unless there be then a prospect of cure. 
  According to the rules of this institution, no person whatever, except governors, or those in company with a governor, is to be permitted to view the hospital and patients; but the president or treasurer may give written orders for the admission of any member of either House of Parliament at convenient hours. 
  The keepers and servants are forbidden to receive any fee or gratuity whatever, either from visitors or others, on pain of dismission. 
  The official return of the state of this hospital as delivered to the lord mayor, according to custom, on Easter Monday last, was as follows: 

Remaining in the hospital, 1815  . 118
Buried last year  . . . . . . . . . . . . .    8
Cured and discharged last year  . 102 
Patients under cure  . . . . . . . . . . 115
------- incurable  . . . . . . . . . . .   81

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